In this December edition of “Cross the Streams” we get rap battles, talking raccoons, talking dolls, Rocky’s comeback as a boxer and a cop, cops who fight monsters, and Hulks that “SMASH!” like it’s Ragnarok.
8-Mile- I still enjoy this flick from ’97 in his wisely only starring role Eminem. The ending has that Karate Kid feel, if Daniel and Johnny fought with curse words instead of feet, plus there is some Michael Shannon in there for good measure.
Ace Ventura: Pet Detective- The perfect storm of Tom Shadyac’s direction, Jim Carrey’s rise to comedic fame and an almost unheard of twist makes this one of the funniest films of all time.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2- Not as brilliant and original as the first film, but this is still a fun watch with a great Marvel villain (something we don’t get enough of) and hilarious moments with those lovable losers and their adorable twig.
The Santa Clause- This is on the must watch every Christmas list along with “A Christmas Story”, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (the animated one) and “Die Hard”, with Tim Allen in his best role aside from Buzz Lightyear. All three are on Netfilx, which are not as good, but the third has time travel, so it gets a pass.
Bright- The trailer and premise for this are enough to get me on board, and Will Smith doesn’t hurt, when he’s given the right role. In a world invaded by characters from Middle-Earth with a “Alien Nation” link? December 22nd can’t get here any sooner.
Creep 2- Check out the first “Creep” if you want to see found footage done right. Mark Duplass is the awesome kind of spooky and awkward, so to see him terrorize someone who is not me, is fun to watch.
Godless- There are very few movie genres that have a 100% greatness guarantee, but westerns get close. In this new series, written by Scott Frank (Out of Sight, Logan), Jeff Daniels plays a bad guy who is out for revenge against someone who betrayed him. Throw in at town that is all women and a world that makes you glad you never had to spend a day in the Wild West and you have a series that is truly great.
Titanic- Yes it made all the money, and it’s parodied all the time (the Rick and Morty episode is one of my favorites, also on Hulu), but it is a classic and rightfully so I admit to getting caught up in it and yes Billy Zane I do enjoy our time together.
The Black Cauldron- Quite simply, they just don’t make them like this anymore, and even at the time in the 80’s there was not enough like “The Secret of Nimh” and this Disney non-musical classic. A farm boy and his friends and a princess have to take on a dark lord to save the world. Now why does that sound familiar?
Child’s Play- Back when it was not silly to have a walking talking/cursing doll wielding a knife at people that are 2 1/2 feet taller than him. Brad Dourif is brilliant in his first and best turn as Chucky your friend till the bloody end.
Cop Land- If you loved this year’s superhero future classic “Logan”, you should check out the early goings of director James Mangold as he brings in a wide range of cops from the beaten-down prize fighter local cop played by Sylvester Stallone, a frustrated good cop in Robert De Niro, and the corrupt with power cop Harvey Keitel as they collide in this 90’s gem.
Hulk vs.- If you want more Thor lord of Sparkles verses your Incredible Hulk action, with some wacky Wolverine fun and a dash of Deadpool, this animated not-entirely-for-kids movie is for you. There is comic book storytelling at its finest, and some of the best knock-down-dragouts ever put to animation.
Rocky I-V- It really is only worth watching the first three for the true Rocky arc. Rise, fail, rematch, win, fall, and rise again. IV is only good for moments, and the comedy is sorely misplaced, and just watch the last 10 min. of V, for it’s barely the best part. But in true fighter form Stallone made up for Tommy Gunn with “Balboa” and “Creed” the one-two punch worthy of a champion.
It Comes at Night- If you are a fan of things that go bump in the night, then this might be just what you need. It’s not your typical bumps, instead it’s not knowing what is really going on that brings out the anxiety and fear. The horror genre is the place to find little seen films like this one, and is does not disappoint.
Brawl in Cellblock 99- Seeing your favorite actor or actress break their mold always make for good viewing. Denzel gets most of his love for “Training Day” because of who he played as much as the over all performance. Vince Vaughn has always played that lovable guy you want to have a drink with, but in this film he becomes the guy you don’t ever want to be around. He is a lot like The Hulk, as you won’t like him when he is angry, but based on performance alone, you are going to love him in this dark and violent story about pushing a man too far.